Five Things to Know About Getting Life Insurance While Pregnant
From the nursery to the car seat, you’ve gone to great lengths to welcome your baby to the world. As you prepare, it’s also a good time to make sure your baby is secure financially. Getting life insurance now is a great idea. If something happens to you, it can help protect your little one for years to come.
As you research policies, you may have a few questions. Pregnancy is a major milestone, but getting life insurance during this time doesn’t have to be complicated. We’ll cover five things you should know about getting life insurance while pregnant that can help you better navigate this process.
You can get life insurance while pregnant, but timing matters
Great news. If you’re pregnant now, you can apply for a life insurance policy. Being honest about your health when applying for life insurance is important—this is no different when you’re pregnant. Omitting information when applying for life insurance can impact your family financially should something happen to you in the future.1
If you’re healthy and don’t have complications due to this or any prior pregnancy, your rate shouldn’t be different than if you weren’t pregnant. If you can, apply for a life insurance policy in the first trimester, so that you are protected should something arise later in your pregnancy, says Alicia Coppa, Amica Assistant Life Sales Supervisor.
“We always tell our customers, the earlier in the pregnancy you apply, the better. Because later in the pregnancy there may be additional medical testing.” Coppa says you can take a huge weight off your shoulders if you lock in a rate during the first trimester. Even if a health condition arises later, your rate won’t change.
But life happens, and sometimes you can’t apply for coverage right away. If you’re diagnosed with a pregnancy-related complication, like gestational diabetes or preeclampsia, an insurer may ask you to postpone your application until after you give birth.1 Coverage is always determined by insurers on a case-by-case basis and all medical conditions can factor into the final decision.
If you wait to secure coverage until after you have the baby, you could face a higher rate, too. That’s because you may experience high blood pressure, postpartum depression and anxiety, or delivery complications. Any of these issues can impact your rate.2
To get a policy, you may need a medical exam
There are times when you apply for life insurance, whether it’s during pregnancy or not, that the insurer may require a healthcare professional to perform a medical exam. They’ll check your weight and blood pressure, and ask about your medical history. Normally an underwriter reviews your pre-pregnancy weight—not your current weight. After all, pregnancy-related weight gain is normal and healthy for most people.
Also, you won’t need to take a pregnancy test. Instead, underwriters rely on the results of your own pregnancy test (whether at home or through your physician) and focus on the rest of your medical history.
“We always tell our customers, the earlier in the pregnancy you apply for life insurance, the better.” — Alicia Coppa, Amica Assistant Life Sales Supervisor
You should get enough life insurance to cover your income and assets
The amount of life insurance you need can vary from person to person, says Coppa. “Not only do we look at replacing income but also financial health, including debt.” This means you’ll need enough coverage for your family to handle all of your financial responsibilities, including your home, student loans and assets.
Whether you work away from home or stay at home, childcare is another substantial cost to families that should be factored into your coverage needs. Life insurance is not just for working parents, stay-at-home parents should consider getting life insurance, too. You’re doing a key job that you’d have to pay someone else to do if you were unable to. If you’re a stay-at-home parent and you pass away, your family could suddenly need to cover childcare costs. This can add up.
You can add your baby as a beneficiary, but there may be better options.
Wondering if you can add your baby as a beneficiary? The answer is yes. You can also consider a Trust for the benefit of the child if something happens to you while the child is still under 18. Coppa recommends consulting with an advisor before making a final decision.
Even if you have employer life insurance, it’s smart to get a separate policy
Employer coverage is not always enough. That’s why it’s so important to have your own policy, too. Plus, employer policies often expire if you leave a company.2
Fortunately, it can be fairly straightforward to get life insurance while you’re pregnant, especially if you do so early on. While you’re at it, it’s a good time to review other coverages, too.
Growing families often make upgrades to improve vehicle safety before the arrival of a baby. Those changes may be able to help you save on your premium for auto insurance.
Talk with your insurer if:
- One parent is staying at home and driving fewer miles.
- You’ve just purchased a larger, safer family car.
- You’re willing to raise your deductible to save on monthly costs.
Remember, there’s a lot to do to prepare for a new baby, but securing life insurance should be at the top of your to-do list. After all, you want to protect and provide for your family, no matter what happens. A solid life insurance policy can care for your family for years to come.
- Life Insurance while Pregnant, Bankrate, 2020
- Interview with Alicia Coppa, Amica Sales Supervisor, January 19, 2020